Customs-Proof Your Laptop

If you've got plans to travel outside of the country in the near future and you plan on taking your laptop, the Iconoclast weblog details how to secure and customs-proof your laptop so that your sensitive information is protected.

Customs officials have been stepping up electronic searches of laptops at the border, where travelers enjoy little privacy and have no legal grounds to object. Laptops and other electronic devices can be seized without reason, their contents copied, and the hardware returned hours or even weeks later.... The information security implications are worrisome.

The guide suggests data encryption methods that will keep your sensitive data private, highlighting apps like TrueCrypt. If the article convinces you to beef up your laptop security, head over to our guide to encrypting your data with the cross-platform TrueCrypt. If you're already living the encrypted life, share your experience in the comments. Photo by redjar.


    I have a fully encrypted HD using a LUKS setup. I don't think that just an encrypted folder on your system is enough because of all the temporary files that are created by the various programs.

    It is also important to ensure that you either disable swap, or encrypt it also.

    I came back from Thailand and because it was Thailand they searched my laptop. I was outraged. They then found the pics from the two girls I was with from a bar in the area. They were of legal age however were done up to look young and they thought it was suspect. They now have taken my laptop with all my personal stuff. This is so wrong. I have never harmed a human and it was them that made the moves on me at the bar while I was drunk. What can I do ppl? :(

    Ok, so you have an encrypted partition. What happens if the customs official asks for the password?

    The thing I am most paranoid about is not pornography, but GPG and SSH keys as well as things like banking passwords stored in an encrypted file.

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